While the vast majority of businesses plan to increase their investments in the cloud over the next five years, a new study finds that the majority of those firms are currently not using their investments to their fullest potential.

A new study by Wakefield Research and Logiworks finds that 96 percent of organizations plan to increase their presence in the cloud, or make first-time investments. But a majority of IT decision makers (80 percent) say their company’s leadership team under-estimates the time and cost required to maintain resources in the cloud.

Wakefield Research surveyed 400 IT executives for the study “Roadblocks to Cloud Success.” Of note, half (50%) reported they are only somewhat confident that their organization could immediately address an issue that caused downtime in cloud services.

Even as the demand for enterprise-level, cloud-based services expands, nearly half (43 percent) of respondents believe their organization’s IT workforce is not completely prepared to address the challenges of managing their cloud resources over the next five years. It is a problem compounded by the high demand and relatively low supply for workers skilled in cloud, security, DevOps engineering and various other IT positions.

“Given the significant time and resources associated with cloud transformation initiatives, enterprises need to have a long-term IT operations plan which includes both migration and maintenance strategy,” said Stephanie Tayengco, Senior vice president of operations at Logicworks. “To best leverage cloud investments while improving operations and performance, part of that strategy should be automation of repeat tasks to enforce best practices. Enterprises can drive operational agility by freeing up scarce, overburdened engineers to concentrate on innovation and growth-related activities without sacrificing infrastructure performance, security or availability.”

Among the survey findings, on average, 43 percent of a company’s cloud applications and infrastructure are currently automated. However, only a small number of businesses (16 percent) indicated that they have automated the majority (75 - 100 percent) of their company’s total cloud infrastructure and applications.

When asked the factors that were holding back automation, respondents indicated the following:

  • ● Security concerns (51 percent)
  • ● Cost concerns (43 percent)
  • ● Lack of expertise among staff (37 percent)

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